Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Reliving My Youth

A scene from the D.C. BBQ Festival 
About a month ago, I took Miles and Evan to the annual Washington D.C. BBQ Festival. I had always heard it was a good time and I wanted to check it out. Talk about food! But, in addition to the fragrant and tasty food, the variety of kids activities was a big reason why I wanted to take the boys. 
Signs from the festival
Our family loves basketball and the NBA sponsored quite a few activities at the festival that were geared toward kids and adults. One particular activity was called NBA Nation. NBA Nation involved a full court obstacle course, which involved a variety of feats of skill. The course involved the following:

1. Dribbling around stationary life-size cut outs of defenders en route to making a lay-up.
2. Then, get your rebound from the lay-up and dribble through a slalom course of the life-size cut out defenders. 
3. Then, taking a ball from a ball rack and executing a bounce bass through an opening.
4. Then, racing to opposite end of the court, stopping at the free throw line, receiving a pass from a NBA Nation volunteer then attempting a jumpshot.
5. Then, grabbing a ball from a ball rack and executing a chest pass through an opening.
6. Then, finishing up where the obstacle course began by dribbling through a slalom course of the life-size cut out defenders en route to making a lay-up.

Miles just made his initial lay-up and he is en route to station two.
All of the above mentioned activities were timed and one could not proceed to the next station until the respective activity had been completed.

Miles and Evan wanted to do this drill and they both performed well, especially Evan considering how much younger and smaller he was compared to all the other participants. As a spur of the moment thing and at my children's urging, I decided to do the drill. I was definitely not dressed for the drill in my sandals and khaki shorts, but the drill looked like a lot of fun. The boys watched our belongings as I made my way to half-court and received instructions regarding the drill. Then, 3-2-1, game time......

I got off to a good start, dribbled/slalomed around the defenders and made a lay-up. I then took a ball off the ball rack and quickly made my way through the defenders and executed a two handed bounce pass through the designated opening. From there, I sprinted to the free throw line at the opposite end of the court, received a pass from one of the volunteers and in one motion as I have coached many boys and girls to do  (Including my own) I squared up to the basket, caught the ball, released the ball, followed through and swish, nothing but net! It felt good and I knew the ball was going through the hoop the second I released it! As I was ran to the chest pass station the lady working the station looked at me, smiled, and said, "All right,now!" I appreciated the support; perfect chest pass through the designated opening. Then, lastly, ball off the ball rack, negotiated the last gauntlet of cut-out defenders en route to another lay-up. Done! It was fun, had a blast!

As I finished, the timekeeper came up to me and said, "Man, that was great! Your time was 27.1 seconds," and as he said this, the volunteer who fed me the pass for the jumpshot ran over to us excitedly and said, "That's a record! That's our fastest time of the day," and the timekeeper concurred. I looked at them both skeptically and asked, "Out of all the muggs who have done this activity today, I have the fastest time? How long has this activity been open, did you just open it? At this they both laughed and the timekeeper replied, "The activity has been open for 5 hours."With this being the case I then said, "Right on!" They said, "Come over and get your prize which happened to be a NBA Nation t-shirt. 

As I returned to Miles and Evan they were all smiles and high 5's. Their comments ranged from, "Dad, that was awesome," to "Dad, you're really not that old!" There was a teenage boy in line behind us about 25 years my junior who commented, "You looked good, you were really moving. I"m gunning for your time." I just smiled.

Evan after finishing the activity.

1 comment:

Carol Rizzardi said...

Nothing better than being "awesome" in the eyes of a child, especially your child! Way to go, friend!